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tv   Countdown With Keith Olbermann  MSNBC  March 12, 2010 8:00pm-9:00pm EST

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it was a big bill. >> the president still has a veto pen? >> no question, but it's a viable option if it proves to be so unpopular that republicans think it will be. >> quickly on the ethics issue, it hasn't been good for democrats but did john enson muddy up any chance of this? >> i think ethics are bad for democrats. ethics are bad for all congressmen. people want to drain this swamp and they don't like politicians no matter who they are. >> i agree. >> chris matthews returns monday night at 5:00 and 7:00 eastern. countdown with keith olbermann starts right now. which of these stories will you be talking about tomorrow? after one year of debate, health care reform all comes down to one week. president obama is staying put for the final days of
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negotiations. and from the speaker of the house, very confident talk. >> i'm delighted that the president will be here for the passage of the bill. it's going to be historic. >> pelosi makes it clear the public option won't be part of the bill and it is not the fault of her chamber. >> i'm not having the senate, which didn't have a public option in its bill, put any of that on our doorstep. we had it. we wanted it. they didn't have it. it's not in the reconciliation. >> tonight, the public option battle with congressman anthony weiner and adam greene on the politics of it all. does bush's brain have a conscience? >> i'm proud we used techniques that broke the will of the terrorists an gave us valuable information. >> karl rove bragging about torture on foreign television. glenn beck's new crusade against christians. >> am i advising people to leave their church? yes. >> now the faithful are being
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urged to leave glenn beck. >> come on, man. you have been ridinging me all day. >> betty white rides a wave of popular support right into the hosting gig on kwo"saturday nig live." tonight, the man who spearheaded the betty white campaign. >> i know tickling a staffer sounds bad until you look at the staffer. [ laughter ] >> one guy couldn't breathe he was tickling him so hard and then dick cheney said, well, we should have done that at gitmo. >> all the hand more now on "countdown." >> it's the whole schmezole. >> good evening from new york. i'm lawrence o'donnell in for keith olbermann. after the white house said president obama will push back his asian trip to march 21 so he can stay in d.c. to see health care over the finish line house
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speaker pelosi said she was delighted the president here for passage of the bill. she qualified what sounded like a promise to pass health care saying only that she hopes to do so. republicans meanwhile kept up their campaign to scare wavering house democrats away from passing the senate bill. asked by chuck todd whether republicans would campaign on repealing reform if it passes, house republican leader john boehner responded as follows. >> well, chuck, if we get to that point, you can bet on it. but all my attention and effort at this point is making sure this bill evenever, ever become law. i think the american people are on our side and have spoken clearly. they want no part of this. democrats who vote for this do so at their own peril. >> it was a democratic blame game over the public option today.
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the house passed a public option last year. the senate did not. after progressive groups pressed senate democrat dick durban on whether he would work to get the votes for a public option and he said he will get the votes for whatever fixes the house includes in the reconciliation bill, speaker pelosi insisted the only reason the house will not include the public option in its reconciliation bill is that the senate would not pass it. but her rationale appeared to have a couple of holes in it, as we'll explain. >> what we will have in reconciliation will be something that is agreed upon house and senate that we can pass and they can pass. so i'm not having the senate, which didn't have a public option in its bill, put any of that on our doorstep. we had it. we wanted it. they didn't have it. it's not in the reconciliation. but it has nothing to do with with whether we initiate it
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here. we did initiate it. >> so what you're saying is that if you initiate it, they will win? >> we're talking about something that is not going to be part of the legislation. why don't we talk about what is going oh happen because i'm quite sad that a public option isn't in there, but it isn't a case of it's not in there because the senate is against it. it isn't in there because they don't have the votes to have it in there or they would have had it in there to begin with. >> except they did seem to have at least 51 votes for it the last time which is all that's needed this time around. a lot of strategic developments to discuss tonight with democrat anthony weiner of new york. you're a supporter of the public option, always have been. you're a supporter of single payer. public options become a hot potato for liberal democrats today. dick durban says he'll fight for
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it. pelosi says it's dead. having seen the vote pledges building up in the senate now to over 50, what would you advise the speaker to do? put it in the house bill or kill it? >> here's the problem. my senate friends are being f n foeny about this. they are going on tv saying, oh, we are for the public option. too bad it's not in there and they are telling nancy pelosi and the house members please, don't make us voes vote on this. there is nothing stopping senator durban from amending the bill to add the public option. i will see to it we have 216 votes to add it. the problem is the senate has been duck ago straight up or down vote on this. harry reid supports it. there is a letter circulating that has more and more members on it. durban says he'll whip on it, but nancy pelosi isn't wrong. we have done the deed in the
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house. we have included a public option. pelosi made sure to have the strongest one we could in there. to blame her is the wrong place to place the blame. if the senate is serious i would like to see senator durbin or anyone when it get there is and they add it in there, no doubt about it when it comes to the house we'll get the votes for it. >> i'm shocked to hear a member of the house to think there is something phony in the senate and they may be posing. let's talk about it for a second. last night on this network with rachel maddow had pelosi saying to bring health care for all americans. you know the president gave up on health care for all americans before they had their first meeting on a bill.
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you were in favor of health care for all americans through medicare for all. these bills and the bill they are determined to pass will leave out half the uninsured. maybe 20 million. maybe 15 million. how can nancy pelosi continue to overpromise and describe what she's doing as health care for all americans? >> well, that is, indeed, what we are working for. we are not going to get it in these bills. the moment we started with the weaker of the bills we took a step back on how many people would be covered. the president made a tactical decision that that was going to be where he would start the process. i would have liked for him to say, you know, the house bill is a better bill. it includes a public option, covers more americans, has a more progressive system, closes the donut hole, but he didn't. he started with our troubled relative, the senate, and started with that bill. pelosi should have said, we want
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to cover all americans eventually and we are approving the senate bill with some elements of the house bill to cover more people. you're right. all of the thumping of chests about the undocumented, they're not going to get coverage in the plan. they are still going to walk into hospital emergency rooms, get care and pass the bill to us. we'll still have gaps because there is no employer mandate in the final bill. these are, indeed, the art of sacrifice and compromise. i'm not thrilled about it, but i can tell you this. we can't let the perfect be the enemy of the good here. the senate bill with some improvements is far better than the status quo. >> i want to broaden our conversation with adam greene, cofounder of the progressive change campaign committee. good evening, adam. let me start with a quote from the statement your group signed onto saying, quote, the public option will live or die based on nancy pelosi's next moves. can you still make that case after hearing what congressman
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weiner just had to say? >> absolutely. congressman weiner has done great work on the issue. there are many health care champions as well. at the end of the day it's not okay to have someone win the blame game. people at this moment have to step up. just two hours ago on "the ed show" i went down the list and showed how we could get 51 votes in the senate. the progressive change campaign committee took our video cameras to capitol hill and got statements. we have people like kay hagan and others who are on the record saying if the house passes the public option they will vote for it. we need the house to step up and be leaders, pass it into law and then they can point the fingers at the senate and pass this thing. >> congressman weiner? >> adam's onto something. every time the public option died, it's been the american people that breathed life into it. what we are trying to do in the imperative is that we are trying
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to prebake as much as we can by having a mini conference committee between the house and senate trying to decide what it is we can pass. one thing we in the house are concerned about is we don't trust the senate to do what they say they are going to do. we're negotiating with one hand tied behind our back, but adam and i are kind of saying the same thing. the only question is who takes the first move? i think we have already taken the first move in the house by having passed it. i don't trust the senate to do it if we put it in the bill. i think they should have an up or down vote on it. in that regard, adam and i are agreeing. >> adam, having worked in the senate, i have to tell you i have to support congressman weiner's distrust of the senate. i don't mean to referee this. i just mean i think the discussion should take that element seriously and consider it. you have these pledges for something that it's possible a lot of the senators believe they will never have to vote on.
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do you sense that there might be something disingenuous in the numbers of senators who signed on to say, i'm willing to do this because they believe they might never be asked to? >> let me be clear. my message tonight is not "trust the senate." the senators have been weak on this issue. the white house has been weak. the house has been strong. what i'm saying is we have more people on the record saying if the house pass it is public option they will voter for it in the senate. if it passes in the house, this is for leadership. let's say the senate is the loser and the house is the winner. the house is winner they have been champs. but if pelosi would give us an up or down vote in thousand and anthony weiner and the rest gave us 216 vote it is senate would have to show their cards. if they were disingenuous the blame would be where it belonged. this is a moment for leadership and this is not a game. people's lives are at stake.
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we need the house to go first. >> congressman, to go back to your point that the speaker and the majority leader in the senate are trying to preconference the bill which is to say they are hoping to pass one reconciliation bill once in the house of representatives. the same bill once in the senate. what could happen here in f the house put the public option in the reconciliation bill and it went to the senate and it was stripped out by amendment, you would then -- which would be a normal process -- have to conference those who products -- the reconciliation bill of the house and the reconciliation bill of the senate -- and go through one more vote. that's done all the time and no one worries about it. it seems what's going on here is the speaker and the majority leader are desperately afraid of going through yet another vote and they seem to be trying to prewire everything. that gets them into this spot on the public option. >> you're exactly right. look at the experience that
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informs that. 290 times this year, the house has passed bills that the senate hasn't taken up. we don't have a lot of confidence that if you start ping-ponging back and forth the senate isn't going to not eventually do it. this is a real problem. the fact is we are being punished in the house and the american people are being punished because the senate has been somewhat feckless throughout the process. but we don't know whether the senate can deliver on anything they say. that's the problem. when we make it more complicated and they whisper and say loudly in meetings, please don't make us vote on the public option because we don't think we can pass anything, it puts us in a difficult spot. what troubles me is the senators and senator durbin did it today, i'll whip for it if it comes to us. they make it look like we are holding this up when their members are saying in every way to nancy pelosi, please let us
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off the hook. >> finally to john boehner's challenge that if you pass this it will be simple in the campaign this year. just two words -- repeal it. that won't be a problem for you in new york city. but for your colleagues in swing districts where they might be vulnerable to a campaign like that, what encouragement do you give them in terms of how they can campaign against republicans having voted for this bill? >> anyone who wants to repeal this is advocating for higher health care costs, having more people uninsured and passing along the bills to all of us. we have $350 billion of deficits in all 50 states. that's higher taxes everyone has to pay. a third is because of health care. there is no doubt that congressman boehner is onto a basic element of the government. someone trying to do something that's good in throng term is going to ultimately plap perhaps take a tough vote in the short
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term. that's what leadership is about. that's why he's in the permanent minority. >> i hope. thank you for guiding us through this dilemma that the house and senate are facing over the public option. >> thank you. >> thanks. >> coming up, we have known the bush administration approved torture by waterboarding terror suspects, but why is karl rove going on international television and bragging about it? not to mention lying about the results. and later, religious leaders compare glenn beck to howard stern and call on christians to stop tuning in. we'll talk to reverend jim wallace about why he's leading a new boycott against beck.
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coming up, karl rove tells the bbc he's proud the united states tortured terror suspects. really? after an eight-year republican presidency, that's what you're proud of?
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not balancing the budget? not -- oh, right. hmm. colonel lawrence wilkerson will puncture rove's pride next. ♪ [ male announcer ] every business day, bank of america lends nearly $3 billion dollars to individuals, institutions, schools, organizations and businesses in every corner of the economy. america. ♪ growing stronger. every day. sure, but do we speak hybrid? yes, we do. and we can say 700 miles on a single tank and epa-estimated 41 mpg city and all the words stick because they're true. we speak the most fuel-efficient midsize sedan in america. yes, we speak car, and apparently quite well.
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fusion is now motor trend's 2010 car of the year. get in...and drive one. ♪ i for one have grown more than a bit disgusted by what former bush administration hacks are willing to say to sell their propaganda-filled books. first came bush speech writer with a book actually titled "how barack obama is inviting the next attack" published by a right wing publishing house. that collection of lies was given promotional platforms on this network and other networks.
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now comes karl rove's memoir with an utterly phony title i would prefer not to name. if you want to buy it, you know how to find it. on his book tour, rove finds himself saying that he is proud that the united states of america used waterboarding. despite the geneva convention's international law saying it is torture and despite the view of the united states government at least until the bush/rove years that waterboarding is torture. despite all that, rove insists that waterboarding is not torture. in an interview on the bbc he was asked if he was proud that america used enhanced interrogation techniques including waterboarding. >> i'm proud that we used techniques that broke the will of these terrorists and gave us valuable information that allowed us to foil plots such as flying airports to heathrow and london, flying aircraft over the
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pacific, into the tallest building in los angeles and other plots. yes, i'm proud that we kept the world safer than it was by the use of these techniques. they are appropriate, in conf m conformity with our international requirements and u.s. law. >> then rove was challenged. waterboarding is torture, isn't it? >> no, it's not. people need to read the memos that outline what was permissible and what was not before they make a judgment about these things. the purpose of the memos was to delineate what met our legal obligations and what was appropriate -- >> not under the geneva convention though. >> rove aloud that reasonable people can disagree but insists it was not torture because every one of the people waterboarded had a doctor that ascertained there would be no long-lasting physical or mental damage to the individual and each was told, you are not going to drown. let's bring in the former chief of staff to secretary of state
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colin powell colonel lawrence wilkerson, currently visiting professor at the college of william & mary. good evening. first i have a personal question for you. i noticed all the biggest fans of torture like rove, cheney lived comfortable lives in which they never once considered destroying that comfort by submitting themselves to a single day of military service. >> not a single day. i have deferments for dick cheney. >> as a military man, what does it feel like to watch the cheerleaders safely positioned on the sidelines their whole lives try to tell you what is the most effective process and technique in war? >> it says to me, and i make no bones about it, that they are all cowards. it's plain and simple. they're all cowards. >> it does seem to me that there is some kind of moral test here
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in advocacy. if you are going to advocate things like this, you should have some kind of experience with them beyond reading memos. i talked to former navy seals who went through waterboarding who say, oh, it's torture. there is no question about it. >> it's been torture since the spanish inquisition. if rove were a general in the philippines after the spanish-american war he would have been relieved by the commander in chief, teddy roosevelt and thrown out of the united states army for the same offense. waterboarding is torture. what rove is saying make as liar out of the president of the united states. more than once i listened to my president george w. bush say to the public that the united states did not torture. that was a lie. because waterboarding is torture. >> rove says under the circumstances he described waterboarding is not torture because it was done in the presence of a doctor -- >> slick it up with doctors and
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other medical personnel present. that sounds like the nazis. >> they had doctors had the prison camps. >> neuronberg cites the responsibility of physicians and it isn't positive what they say. i can't imagine that physician i had the highest clearance. top secret sci. i saw almost everything secretary powell saw. i saw no proof of any of the things that karl rove indicated. as a matter of fact, no proof
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that any of the interrogation techniques other than those used by the fbi early on had a real impact on actionable intelligence. i have something else to say about mr. rove. no political counselor should have -- he doesn't have a need to know. he shouldn't have access to that kind of classified information. he has no business having access. if the white house allowed him to, that is a no-no. i will guess that he's getting information from dick cheney because he did not have access to that kind of information. >> lawrence wilkerson, more than any other night i wish we had more time with you tonight. i'm sure this is not the last we have heard from karl rove on this. >> he's trying to sell his book. >> or from you. >> thank you very much, colonel. >> thank you, lawrence. >> coming up, glenn beck compares churches concerned with social justice to nazis and communists. now christian leaders are calling for a beck boycott. and a much different crusade. the online campaign to get betty
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white on "saturday night live" pays off. we'll introduce you to the mastermind of the facebook campaign ahead on "countdown." how do we know how how many town roads we need? the census helps us know exactly what we need,
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ahead on "countdown" glenn beck faced a boycott from advertisers and now he's facing a boycott from christians after he compares them to nazis. and later, the massa mess -- a
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glenn beck is no longer content accusing the obama administration of being full of marxists and communists. and he isn't content with accusing liberals of being secret marxists and communists. now he's going after the churches of america. beck began his latest attack on his radio show last week. >> i beg you look for the words "social justice" or "economic justice" on your church website. if you find it, run as fast as you can. social justice and economic justice, they are code words. if you have a priest that is pushing social justice, go find another parish. >> so social justice and
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economic justice are code words for -- what? >> both the communists who are on the left, they say, you know, there's a communist and the nazis on the right. that's what people say. but they both subscribe to one philosophy and they flew one banner. one had the hammer and sickle. the other was a swastika, but on each banner read the words in america of this -- social justice. >> beck who is a mormon finds himself in disagreement with his own church. kent jackson, an associate dean of religion at brigham young university said over the course of 60 years social justice has been in practice in every congregation of mormons he is familiar with. christian leaders immediately responded to beck's assertions. the reverend jim wallace, who leads the christian anti-poverty group sojourners and will join
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us in a moment, called on christians to leave glenn beck. beck later back-tracked -- a little bit. he complained that the reverend jim wallace was attacking him and he said that that's social justice in which you empower yourself to go out and help the poor is permissible. but reverend wallace sent a letter to beck asking him to go much further in clarifying his views. meantime, the outrage has not quieted. a united church of christ congregation in wantagh, new york, posted this message -- sorry, mr. beck, jesus preached social justice. the pastor of the church, ronald garner said the church is a very progressive church where open and affirming in the denomination so they accept gay, lesbian, by sexual and trance
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gender people. we are a peace church, so i felt it was a sign in front of of the building to say mr. beck's comments about social justice being a perversion of the gospel was a total distortion of anybody that's even given a cursory reading to the words of jesus. joining me now, as promised, the president of sojourners and the author of "rediscovering values on wall street, main street and your street, a moral compass for the new economy" reverend wallace. >> good to be with you, lawrence. >> i'd like to begin with asking you about the letter to glenn beck. please expand on that. >> well, i said, dear brother glenn, let's have a conversation about this. when glenn beck started this by saying, as you just reported that social justice was a code word for communism and naziism i couldn't believe it. he said we should leave our
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churches if the pastors preach this. that means the catholic church, black churches, evangelical churches and his own mormon church and he said to turn in the pastor to the authorities. the problem is the authorities agree. pope benedict would turn himself in to himself, i guess. if glenn beck asked us to leave our churches, we should leave glenn beck. now i'm saying let's have a conversation and clarify what you mean. i think you don't want to be saying this. i hope you don't. let's have a better conversation. i hope he responds. i don't know glenn beck. i have not attacked him. he's attacked me, but i'm not going to attack him. of the issue here is he actually said social justice is a perversion of the gospel. i believe it is at the heart of the gospel. let's have a conversation to decide which is true. >> he's jumping in as beck is
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wont to do. he's plunging into a subject he knows nothing about -- in this case, christian theology. what would you tell him about what jesus christ had to say about social justice? >> well, the first words out of jesus' mouth in luke chapter 4 at nazareth, he said the spirit of the lord is upon me because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. the gospel's meant to be good news to the poor. and so we help poor people but we work at the conditions that make people poor. so the hebrew prophets, jesus preaching, teachings, the early church, all of our churches have talked about this for a long time. so glenn beck doesn't understand this perhaps but he's offending and slandering churches. he's asauling churches. -- assaulting churches. so we say, okay, let's have a conversation and clarify this. christians are going to stop watching his show. he needs to apologize or have a
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conversation. i hope he does. >> how would you guide him through theological studies about christianity which he clearly has not done? there is a massive body of literature, even in salt lake within the mormon facilities out there and their libraries, not just on mormonism but on all other religions. he clearly has not examined the texts, hasn't examined any modern versions of the text. where would you suggest he begin his christian theological education? >> mormon leaders called me to apologize and say they are embarrassed by this, too. it is in their scriptures as well. when i was in seminary we did a study of the bible and found every text about the poor in the bible about social justice, wealth and poverty. we found 2,000 verses on the subject. one of my colleagues took a pair of scissors and cut out of the
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bible every reference to the poor. it took him a long time to do that. when he was done the bible was in shreds, full of holes and falling apart. i would hand glenn beck the bible and say, glenn, this is your bible. you cut everything out. let's go back through verse by verse to look at what, in fact, god says about justice. the god in the bible is a god of justice. though the poor are in the center of god's concern, poverty breaks the heart of god. it breaks the heart of the churches. this is fbt christians who -- this is about christians who may disagree on politics. republicans, democrats, we have different rules but justice is integral to the gospel. across the spectrum, christians are saying glenn beck got it wrong. >> reverend wallis, of sojour r
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sojournesojourne sojourner, thank you for your guidance tonight. >> i hope he calls us. >> coming up, betty white's big week. she found out she will host "saturday night live." we'll talk to the man who led the facebook campaign to make it happen. and the best of late night this week after former congressman eric massa gave comedy writers the funniest washington sex scandal ever. at the top of the hour with rachel, bart stupak stops getting attention from house leaders and now claims his critics are for abortion because it's cheaper than paying for a birth. advisor:... ms. davis, this is onstar. i've received a signal you've been in a crash... i'm contacting emergency services... 911 dispatch:...onstar reporting a front end crash... on wakefield road... chevy malibu... fire/ems:...air bags deployed... ...injuries reported... advisor: ma'am, help is on the way...ok. and i'll stay on the line with you until they get there.
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as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. >> don't drink alcohol in excess with cialis. side effects may include headache, upset stomach, delayed backache, or muscle ache. to avoid long-term injury, seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than 4 hours. >> if you have any sudden decrease or loss in hearing or vision, stop taking cialis and call your doctor right away. >> 36-hour cialis or cialis for daily use. ask your doctor if cialis is right for you. you can be ready for your moment with cialis. as we have witnessed over the past week, consistency is not what congressman eric massa is known for -- snorkeling is. but on wednesday night massa declared his appearance on larry king would be his final interview. true to his word, as of this broadcast, eric massa has yet to find his way back to a microphone. tonight, to fill the vacuum left by the suddenly silent
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congressman, here are some of the late night memories inspired by his misadventures. >> new york democratic congressman eric massa announced he was resigning from congress due to health reasons. what health reasons? well, rumors began to circulate that he had testicular -- um, not cancer. what is it when you're not a doctor but you try to check out other people's balls? [ laughter ] >> oh, groping. >> so let's try to capture this image in our minds. congressman in his office in washington, a staffer tickling him -- [ laughter ] >> it turns out massa was accused of sexually harassing a male staff member. a male staff -- [ laughter ] >> now, i know tickling a staffer sounds bad until you get a look at the staffer. [ laughter ] >> folks, i hear this guy was
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literally asking for it. >> one guy couldn't breathe he was tickling him so hard and then dick cheney said, well, we should have done that at gitmo. >> last night, to defend himself massa sat down with the silver gopher, glenn beck. it was a true meeting of the minds. >> i mean -- >> oh, i have -- >> in, in -- >> i -- >> you're -- >> no, no. no, no. >> now, it -- it -- it's -- >> oh, yeah. it's like jazz, baby. >> glenn beck had him on his show last night. outcrazying glenn beck is no small -- it's like outsexing tiger woods. >> really, i tickled him until he couldn't breathe and four guys jumped on me. it was my 50th birthday. [ laughter ] >> just quickly, cancel my 50th birthday. >> anyway, he went on larry king and we got ahold of footage that
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never made it to air. >> young male staffers get tired you give them a pig byback ride, you trip, your clothes fall off. what are you going to do -- not give him a piggy back ride? >> i'm sitting here showering, naked as a jaybird and here comes rahm emanuel poking his finger in my chest yelling at me. do you know how awkward it is to have a political argument with a naked man? [ laughter ] >> yes. yes i do. >> this is really going on, folks, in massa's own words. >> and this administration and this house leadership have said, quote/unquote, they will stop at nothing to pass this health care bill. and now they have gotten rid of me and it'll pass. you connect the dots. >> fine. here are the dots. now let's connect them. no, no, no! no, jimmy, no.
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>> from the kings of comedy to the queen. up next, the guy who set facebook ablaze with his dream of getting betty white on "saturday night live." [ children laughing ] look in the glove box. [ children laughing ] suitcase? huh? ♪ where do gummy bears hide? under the seat. look! yeah! ♪ [ telephone rings ] [ male announcer ] the all new chevy equinox. [ man ] guess who? dad! [ man ] enjoy the trip! okay, daddy! [ laughter ]
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she's won six emmys over a career spanninging seven decades, but it was a campaign on facebook that helped a comedic icon score one of the most coveted gigs.
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yes, betty white will host "saturday night live." best known as the caustic happy homemaker sue anne nivens on "the mary tyler moore show" and ditzy rose nylan on "the golden girls." she'll host the show on may 8, mother's day weekend. she'll be the oldest host in the show's 35-year history at 88. the episode will feature a reunion of former women cast members tina fey, amy pohler, molly shannon, maya rudolph, and rachel dratsch. they are saying the feeling for her at the show and particularly among the women coming back is very deep. it wasn't the first time snl wanted her to host. ms. white admitting, years ago i turned it down three times. it's so new york and i'm not new
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york at all. enter the facebook page. betty white to host snl, please. with a slew of recent roles and appearancesaring her to younger fans it was a super bowl ad for snickers that prompted the online frenzy. [ growling ] >> mike, what did you do, man? >> come on, man, you have been riding me all day. >> mike, you have been playing like betty white out there. >> that's not what your girlfriend says. >> baby, eat a snikers. better? >> better. >> that hurt. >> you're not you when you're hungry. snickers satisfies. >> it didn't take long for the facebook page to score nearly half a million page on the campaign to get ms. white the hosting gig could no longer be
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ignored. lorne michaels said it took on a groundswell. it was an outpouring of affection from fans and we feel the same way. as for ms. white, she is humbled. >> it's lovely and at my age it's certainly unexpected. joining me now is the man who started it all, creator of "betty white to host snl, please" facebook page, david matthews. thanks for your time tonight, david. >> hey, thank you, lawrence. good evening. >> now with this facebook campaign, do you understand what you've done? do you know you have done what many hollywood agents have never been able to do -- land a star the spot hosting "saturday night live"? >> well, i wouldn't take all the credit for it, lawrence. i started a page a few months ago, but if it weren't for the half a million people that were on it, it certainly wouldn't have done what it has done. >> now, betty white's agents --
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i don't know whether you know how show business works but i'm telling you now, they want you dead. you have ruined their lives. they take a lot of her money for getting this kind of stuff for her and you got it for her for free. have you had contact with her agents? i suggest you don't tell them where you live. >> i have talked to her agent a couple of times. i have not talked to betty white herself. in fact,er i most recently spoke with her agent last night and he was giving me a run down of all the things betty white has coming for the rest of the year. we talked a little bit about if there was a chance at getting me a couple tickets to see the show on may 8. >> the tickets thing is done. i don't care what agents say. "countdown" is getting you tickets for "saturday night live." we'll take care of it. when the campaign started in december, did you anticipate this reaction? what was your biggest dream for
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the campaign? >> well, no, of course i didn't anticipate this at all? when i first started it, i told my friends if we maid it to 10,000 fans it would have been beyond my wildest dreams. once we hit 10,000 and media folks picked it up, it grew like wildfire. it's almost half a million strong now and growing. >> and betty white, has she managed to pick up the phone and start talking to you about what else you have in mind for her given that her agents have been taking all this money and have been unable to get her things like this? >> i certainly wouldn't take credit away from her agent who is a very, very nice man and from everything that i can gather very, very able. betty white has not called me to ask me anything, sir. >> all right. i need your phone number. there are a couple of deals i'm interested in in hollywood that my agents haven't been able to get for me. are you thinking of expanding
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into more clients and representing more people on facebook? >> no. i really haven't given that any thought. it was something that was a fun thing talked about amongst friends one night before the new year. probably had a glass of wine or three and the next night i said, you know, let's create this thing and see what comes of it. the rest is history. >> have you ever thought -- i'm serious now. have you ever thought of a career in show business representing people like betty white and seeing what you could get for them? >> i have never thought about that in my life. i have never considered myself anything hollywoodesque at all. if you would have told me two months ago i would be here in a tv studio in texas on national television i would have laughed in your face. this has come up very quickly. >> let me tell you how your life will work now. betty white's agents want you dead. every other agency in hollywood is watching this and


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